Living conditions

The "assembly centers" were hastily erected quarters located throughout the West Coast at fairgrounds, racetracks and other similar facilities. Conditions at these locations were appalling. People were housed in animal stalls and barracks with communal bathrooms and mess halls. Privacy was next to nonexistent. Most families lived in a 20-by-20-foot room separated from the next "apartment" by wood partitions that did not reach the ceiling. Shortages of food and deplorable sanitation were common. Overcrowding, uncertainty, and stress created tension in the "assembly centers," even as the demoralized camp inmates tried to improve living conditions.

World War II (215)
Temporary Assembly Centers (175)
Living conditions (364)

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364 items
Information Release No. 22: Issue of Clothing (ddr-densho-356-785)
doc Information Release No. 22: Issue of Clothing (ddr-densho-356-785)
Memo to all residents of Merced Assembly Center from Harry L. Black, Center Manager regarding clothing allotments for internees.
Letter to Yuri Domoto from Sonoko Riusaki (ddr-densho-356-281)
doc Letter to Yuri Domoto from Sonoko Riusaki (ddr-densho-356-281)
Letter to Yuri Domoto Tsukada from her sister Sonoko Domoto Riusaki in which she provides advice for preparing for forced removal and what to prepare for live in the Assembly Centers. Item tied together with all objects between ddr-densho-356-277 and ddr-densho-356-320.
Notice to internees, bathroom hours (ddr-densho-356-778)
doc Notice to internees, bathroom hours (ddr-densho-356-778)
Notice to internees that informs of the times in which one of the bathrooms in male only and female only.
Four letters to Yuri Domoto from Tomi Domoto (ddr-densho-356-289)
doc Four letters to Yuri Domoto from Tomi Domoto (ddr-densho-356-289)
Four letters stored in one envelope to Yuriko Domoto Tsukada from her cousin Tomi Domoto. Appears the letters were mailed separately and later stored together in one envelope. 6/8 letter: discusses events leading up to forced removal, inquires about how family are settling into the camp and how hers is and mutual friends. 8/8 letter: discusses …
Clothing list and request for Richard Tsukada (ddr-densho-356-796)
doc Clothing list and request for Richard Tsukada (ddr-densho-356-796)
List of approved clothing items and their prices and a clothing request form filled out for Richard "Dick" Tsukada.
Postcard to Yuri Domoto from May Morioka (ddr-densho-356-286)
doc Postcard to Yuri Domoto from May Morioka (ddr-densho-356-286)
Postcard to Yuri Domoto from May Morioka in which she talks about life at Tanforan and asks for Yuri to write back so they can keep in touch. Item tied together with all objects between ddr-densho-356-277 and ddr-densho-356-320.
Administrative Notice No. 19 Conservation of Water (ddr-densho-356-798)
doc Administrative Notice No. 19 Conservation of Water (ddr-densho-356-798)
Administrative Notice No. 19 from Santa Anita Assembly Center on the conservation of water as water is not draining properly. The Assembly center closed laundry facilities on Wednesday and one shower location each day of the week.
Clothing Issuance (ddr-densho-356-797)
doc Clothing Issuance (ddr-densho-356-797)
Information from Santa Anita Assembly Center on clothing allotments and issuing.
Letter to Yuri from Yoshito (ddr-densho-356-219)
doc Letter to Yuri from Yoshito (ddr-densho-356-219)
Envelope and letter addressed to Yuri Domoto from Yoshito Shibata. In the letter Yoshito writes about the descriptions of the Assembly centers he's heard so far and how positive Yuri's description was, pending deployment to Japan, his friendship with fellow Nisei soldier Stg. Harry Fujita, his recent promotion to Tech Sgt. He also describes a USO …
Two letters to Yuri from Min Yonekura (ddr-densho-356-285)
doc Two letters to Yuri from Min Yonekura (ddr-densho-356-285)
Two letters to Yuriko Domoto Tsukada from Minoru "Min" Yonekura. Both letters stored in one envelope, unclear if they were mailed together or separately. Letter 5/11: describes forced removal, details items needed in assembly center to make barracks feel homey, food quality in the assembly center and general life there. Letter 2: discusses plans to move …
Barrack, mess and issue record (ddr-densho-356-770)
doc Barrack, mess and issue record (ddr-densho-356-770)
A written record of Yuriko Domoto Tsukada's barrack assignment.
Clothing Request (ddr-densho-356-773)
doc Clothing Request (ddr-densho-356-773)
Carbon copy of a clothing request made by Yuriko Domoto
Administrative Notice No. 24 Contraband Articles and Possession of Liquor and Drugs (ddr-densho-356-801)
doc Administrative Notice No. 24 Contraband Articles and Possession of Liquor and Drugs (ddr-densho-356-801)
Administrative Notice No. 24 from Santa Anita Assembly Center quotes the Center Regulations regarding the possession of contraband. Contraband includes: Shortwave Radios, cameras, firearms, weapons, alcohol, and drugs.
Takeharu Inouye Diary (ddr-densho-365-1)
doc Takeharu Inouye Diary (ddr-densho-365-1)
Takeharu Inouye's first diary documents his family's forced move to the Sacramento Assembly Center, followed by their move to the Tule Lake concentration camp. Since his mother, Miyoe Inouye, was a teacher, thirteen-year-old Takeharu's diary focuses on his classes in the Japanese and American schools at Tule Lake. His struggles with his schoolwork, as well as …
American Concentration Camps VOLUME 6 June, 1942- December, 1942 (ddr-densho-372-6)
doc American Concentration Camps VOLUME 6 June, 1942- December, 1942 (ddr-densho-372-6)
Volume 6 divides into six sections. Description about this volume reads directly from the book as follows: Section 1 presents archival documents from June 1942 that show the first major modifications of relocation policies and depict the resistance by Western Defense Command to any amelioration of the condition of the Japanese Americans. Section 2 contains selected …
Letter from Nobutaka (probably Nobuko Yanagimachi) to Tamako Inouye (ddr-densho-383-556)
doc Letter from Nobutaka (probably Nobuko Yanagimachi) to Tamako Inouye (ddr-densho-383-556)
Re: conditions at Camp Harmony. Nobuko Yanagimachi was a fellow UW student and member of Fuyo-Kai
Letter from Bill to Tama (ddr-densho-383-543)
doc Letter from Bill to Tama (ddr-densho-383-543)
Dated "2nd Night", describing living conditions at Camp Harmony
Amache camp housing (ddr-densho-390-64)
img Amache camp housing (ddr-densho-390-64)
A man walks along a dirt road in front of several Amache concentration camp housing buildings.
Drawing of the latrine and barracks at Tanforan Assembly Center (ddr-densho-392-8)
doc Drawing of the latrine and barracks at Tanforan Assembly Center (ddr-densho-392-8)
Caption by Kenneth Iyeki: "A scene midway on the track length on the west side of camp. At the very end of the track to the left is the commisary warehouse. The rails were a favorite of youngsters. They would boast of having walked such and such a distance. Never heard of anyone balancing his way …
Drawing of the music school at Tanforan Assembly Center (ddr-densho-392-5)
doc Drawing of the music school at Tanforan Assembly Center (ddr-densho-392-5)
Caption written by Kenneth Iyeki: "This is the Tanforan music school which prior to evacuation served the racetrack fans as a refreshment house. At all hours, the sounds of pianos and violins would sound forth from every window. Every so often, music concerts would be held, and the edifice would be jammed every time. The [sic] …
Drawing of the latrine and barracks at Tanforan Assembly Center (ddr-densho-392-6)
doc Drawing of the latrine and barracks at Tanforan Assembly Center (ddr-densho-392-6)
Caption by Kenneth Iyeki: "This is a scene from the roof of an old stable. The latrine building which served our area [?] to the left. To the right is barrack #16 and between the two buildings is the stable where the batchelors [sic] used to sit all day and talk. Beyond the stable, partially hidden …
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